Vizag Fintech Festival 2018 A New Story on the Growth Path

The inaugural edition of Vizag Fintech Festival 2018, an initiative by the Government of Andhra Pradesh and organized by Fintech Valley Vizag was held from 22 to 26 October 2018 at Hotel Novotel, Vizag.

Vizag Fintech was one-of-its-kind, and one of the most comprehensive and reputed global platforms in the fintech domain, where India’s key industry players of the financial and startup ecosystem came together to discuss industry trends, challenges and market insights including the Indian regulatory framework. The event also showcased product launches, innovations, and augmented the forethought through the exhibition and conference platform.

The Vizag Fintech Festival was a 5 day event which saw more than 75 start-ups as exhibitors, and over 2,500 delegates and visitors from around 20 countries.

The festival saw the presence of dignitaries like N. Chandrababu Naidu, Hon’ble Chief Minister, Andhra Pradesh; Nara Lokesh, IT Minister, Andhra Pradesh; Ganta Srinivasa Rao, Minister of Human Resources Development of Andhra Pradesh; J. A. Chaudhary, IT Advisor to Govt. of Andhra Pradesh; K. Vijayanand, IAS, Principal Secretary ITE&C Dept., Andhra Pradesh; and Anoop Singh, IFS, Special Secretary – ITE&C Dept., Andhra Pradesh.

Vizag Fintech Festival 2018 also featured a series of exciting events including CXO golf tournament, CXO roundtable, networking reception, comic relief, re-imagine tour, demo day and awards, and site tours. The VFF 2018 conference program included various industry discussions, new insights pertaining to the sector and industry best practices. The conference themes included ankTech, InsurTech, GovTech, Financial Inclusion and EmergeTech. A few topics for the speaker sessions and panel discussions included ‘Future of banking,’ ‘Social impact through Fintech,’ ‘Fintech landscape in India and rest of the world,’ and ‘InsureTech trends.’

VFF 2018 hosted eight keynotes along with panel discussions, case study presentation & fireside chats that brought together stakeholders of the industry on a single platform, allowing exchange of ideas that added value to Indian Fintech ecosystem at large.

VFF 2018 also launched a white paper on KPMG Blockchain – Thought Leadership. The white paper was launched by Kunal Pandey, Head – Financial Services in Risk Consulting, KPMG; K. Vijayanand; and J. A. Chowdary.

The third day witnessed the unveiling of the world’s first humanoid citizen robot, Sophia. Sophia is a highly soughtafter speaker in business and has showed her prowess and great potential across many industries. She has appeared on stage as a panel member and a presenter in high level conferences, covering how robotics and artificial intelligence will become a prevalent part of people’s lives. Her reputation extends beyond business into the global and social arena. She was named the world’s first United Nation Innovation Champion by United Nations Development Program (UNDP), and will have an official role in working with UNDP to promote sustainable development and safeguard human rights and equality.

The following day saw the most exciting session of the festival with Sophia engaging in an intriguing interaction with Mr. Lokesh, and the audience.

The US$1 million Challenge was being conducted worldwide enabling startups to showcase their products and solutions. With roadshows in 8 major cities (Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Tel Aviv, Paris, London, Hong Kong and Bangalore) around the globe, the challenge culminated in Vizag with 37 finalists from around the world pitching on demo Day. The Government of Andhra Pradesh, in strategic collaboration with its challenge partners, DCF Ventures and Bizofit selected two startups each from Fintech, Agritech and Emergetech, as winners of the first ever US$1 million global startup challenge as the grand finale of the 5 day festival.

All the 37 startups had an opportunity to exhibit at the Vizag Fintech Festival 2018 to more than 1500 global delegates comprising VCs, angel investors and corporate partners. All the winners and finalists were awarded prizes by Nara Lokesh.

Vizag, with its remarkable technology ecosystem, is now the most attractive destination for innovation driven Fintech players. Not only Indian marquee companies but also several foreign companies have pledged to invest in the city, generating jobs in the near future. Vishakhapatnam is being developed as the most preferred global destination for Fintech and other emerging technology companies around the world, to start their operations and to drive innovation.

Leave a Reply